TUI Travel has claimed demand has now recovered following the ash cloud and that it will meet expectations for the full year, excluding the £90 million hit from the disruption.
Its half year results issued this morning show a widening of its first-half pretax loss to £367 million from £333million in the first half of 2009.
This year there was a big improvement in the second quarter compared with the first – second quarter underlying losses improved by £47 million while first quarter underlying losses increased by £25m.
In the UK, it carried 13% fewer passengers during the winter season, although it lifted average selling price by 11%.
Current trading for the summer season is now back on track, with “booking volumes in every major source market ahead of capacity changes”.
In the UK, TUI said that it “continues to outperform the market in terms of pricing and volumes achieved”.
It noted that demand for the peak month of August is 9% ahead, while measures taken to minimise any negative impact of the World Cup in June appear to be working with June bookings 7% ahead of last year.
Overall, its current position in the UK is up 4% in terms of volume and pricing up 10%.
Elsewhere in the report, TUI’s busienss to consumer bedbanks, laterooms.com and asiarooms.com, lifted booked room nights in the half year by 13% to 2.3 million.
TUI also said that its dedicated web site for its Russia operations – www.tui.ru – was getting 15,000 visitors a day within a week of launch.
Earlier speaking on the BBC Tui Travel chief executive Peter Long defended the operator’s decision to demand compensation from the government over the ash cloud flights ban.